HOME >> BIOLOGY >> NEWS
Worm brings death to coral

THIS much we know: coral bleaching is a modern epidemic that some biologists predict will kill up to half the world's reefs this century as climate change raises sea temperatures. What we have missed is that some bleaching may actually be an infectious disease spread by a worm, a "malaria of the oceans".

Israeli scientists say they have studied a type of coral whose bleaching is triggered by a bacterium, and found that this is carried and transmitted by a coral-feeding worm. If the same is true for other corals, scientists may be able to prevent the disease by targeting the worm vector, just as they control malaria by targeting mosquitoes.

Corals depend on algae inside their bodies to provide carbohydrates and oxygen through photosynthesis. This partnership allows corals to thrive in infertile areas of ocean, and explains why reef communities are so rich. But when water temperature rises, the algae either die or the corals eject them in response to the stress of the heat. Before too long the entire reef turns white. It is unclear how well reefs later recover, and the sharp rise in coral bleaching since the 1980s has sparked dire predictions for their future (see Box).

Most marine biologists agree that bleaching is caused by rising sea temperatures, and the best way to stop it is to cut carbon emissions. But that is an indirect, long-term strategy that may not save reefs in time. Now there may be a more immediate remedy.

In the late 1990s, Yossi Loya and Eugene Rosenberg led a team from Tel Aviv University that found a bacterium that causes coral bleaching. Crucially, it turns out to be more virulent at higher temperatures. "Coral biologists are not microbiologists," says Rosenberg. "They saw the association of bleaching with temperature, but they did not see the bacterium."

The microbe, named Vibrio shiloi, was responsible for bleaching the stony coral Oculina patagonica in the Mediterranean Sea. But researchers were mystified because th
'"/>

Contact: Claire Bowles
claire.bowles@rbi.co.uk
44-207-331-2751
New Scientist
9-Apr-2003


Page: 1 2

Related biology news :

1. New Arizona State center brings science to policy on issues of water resources and urban growth
2. From science fiction to reality: Nanomedicine brings fresh hope to the medical world
3. New diagnostic tool brings effective treatment closer to patients
4. Technique brings immune-based therapies closer to reality
5. Hebrew University research brings higher peanut yields
6. UCSD brings powerful visualization to high school classroom
7. UCR entomologists report bee-dancing brings more food to honeybee colonies
8. Fire and ice: An altered protein brings fever, chills
9. New mighty mice research brings muscle growth closer to reality
10. Florida research shows that for rice, warmer earth brings uncertain future
11. Genetically engineered hemoglobin brings artificial blood a step closer

Post Your Comments:
*Name:
*Comment:
*Email:


(Date:1/26/2017)... CITY , Jan. 26, 2017  Crossmatch, a ... unveiled a new solution aimed at combatting fraud, waste ... solution was introduced at the Action on Disaster Relief ... key meeting point for UN agencies and foreign assistance ... Fraud, waste and abuse are a largely unacknowledged ...
(Date:1/24/2017)... Jan. 24, 2017 Biopharm Reports has ... laboratory use of nuclear magnetic resonance spectroscopy (NMR). ... and profiled current practices, developments, trends and end-user ... as growth and opportunities. These areas include growth ... instruments, needs and innovation requirements, hyphenated NMR techniques, ...
(Date:1/21/2017)... Research and Markets has announced the addition of the "Global ... ... recognition biometrics market to grow at a CAGR of 19.36% during ... scenario and the growth prospects of the global voice recognition biometrics ... the revenue generated from the sales of voice recognition biometrics including ...
Breaking Biology News(10 mins):
(Date:2/21/2017)... FRANCISCO , Feb. 21, 2017   Invitae ... genetic information companies, today announced that members of the ... Company 37th Annual Health Care Conference on Monday, March ... p.m. Pacific in Boston, Massachusetts . ... presentation may be accessed by visiting the investors section ...
(Date:2/20/2017)... , Feb. 20, 2017 /PRNewswire/ - BioAmber Inc. (NYSE: BIOA ... President and CEO and Fabrice Orecchioni, the company,s COO, has been ... COO over the past four years, Fabrice has overseen the construction, ... and the management of the Mitsui JV.  Fabrice has ... the proposed China JV. ...
(Date:2/20/2017)... ... 20, 2017 , ... Salford-based Mettler Toledo Safeline, which employs ... processing and packaging industries, was runner-up for the Environmental Achievement Award, sponsored by ... or taken the most innovative steps to improve its environmental performance. , ...
(Date:2/20/2017)... ... February 20, 2017 , ... ... chest wall collapses in pre-term infants with respiratory distress, and assist surgeons ... $600,000 in funding through the ninth round of the University City Science ...
Breaking Biology Technology:
Cached News: